SAINT PAUL - Today marks the beginning of the trial of Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd. This process will be strenuous and traumatic for many throughout the state, especially for BIPOC communities and those who have fought for justice over the last year. The People of Color and Indigenous (POCI) Caucus released the following statement to remember the life of George Floyd and highlight the urgent need for continued public safety reform:
“It is difficult to comprehend the full scale of consequences that stem from the fateful day of May 25, 2020. For many of us, it marked a turning point in our lives, and how we view public safety. The trauma of that day and the sleepless nights that followed will stay with us for the rest of our lives, but the hope is that we can honor this moment by enacting change that will last for generations.
There are some things we know for sure. We know that a man's life was taken before his time, before our eyes. We all bore witness to the final minutes of a human life that was snuffed out with a terrible cruelty that was all too casual in its nature. We know that our society has not changed enough, that this terrible death can and will occur again if we do not act now to transform how we approach public safety so that we are all working together to keep one another safe.
The POCI caucus has worked tirelessly to make positive change, and while we have been successful on many fronts, including with bipartisan support on the Police Accountability Act of 2020, which included over 20 measures meant to transform policing and public safety, this work is only the beginning. We will continue to fight for justice for our black, brown, and Indigenous communities, and we hope that this trial is the beginning of justice for George Floyd.”
The People of Color & Indigenous (POCI) Caucus includes Reps. Esther Agbaje (59B), Jamie Becker-Finn (42B), Cedrick Frazier (45A), Aisha Gomez (62B), Hodan Hassan (Vice- Chair 62A), Kaohly Her (64A), Athena Hollins (66B), Fue Lee (59A), Carlos Mariani (65B), Rena Moran (65A), Mohamud Noor (60B), Ruth Richardson (52B), John Thompson (67A), Samantha Vang (Chair, 40B), Jay Xiong (67B), Tou Xiong (53B), and Senators Bobby Joe Champion (59), Omar Fateh (62), Melisa Franzen (49), Foung Hawj (67), Mary Kunesh (41), Patricia Torres Ray (Chair, 63)